The gentle Bumble bee

I came home from work today to my landlord and her father murdering the bumblebees that live under my front porch a giant can of raid and soap and water they were applying to the dark entrance crack right under my porch was a battle ground. The Bumbles were not going easy or happy. “Bumblebee’s don’t sting you know.” “I don’t know what they are but I don’t wan em”, she says matter of factly and it is her house. So eyes watering up from the sting of raid against them and the heartfelt angst at my friends being destroyed I move to go into my apartment, past the dead and smashed bodies, they reminded me of ignorant children I quelled my rising anger, after all I need this bungalow. I am not ready to move again so soon. I feel like a sellout.

 I go into the house and throw my things on the couch, take off my shoes. Stare out the window and close them all, the smell of raid is thick in the living room and in my throat it feels like I am the one sprayed and choking. I light some candles on the nature table and peel off my clothes now raid infused and change quickly.

 I go back outside and say meekly ” I think I am having an allergic reaction to the Raid can you please stop spraying it?” They are done now though. I hope my mentioning that Bumblebees don’t sting and are in fact good for nature might have made a small ding in their armor of ignorance. The old man (he’s in his 90’s) grew up on a farm he should know better.

I can’t really say all that I want to these people, as I said I don’t want to move. The gypsy lifestyle is not for me. I am a Bumblee myself and I have made my nest here, built my colony and do not plan to leave it any time soon.  The Raid can image is stuck in my mind I hate that smell, it reminds me of my father who was just as ignorant and nature hating as my landlords.  The first chance I get I am going to go out and hose that stuff away but they know me… they will be watching.  I am a known trouble maker and supporter of fringe environmental issues in this neighborhood. My garden club is looked at as if we were a bunch of teenage hooligans or crack dealers. We meet at my house and there are slanted accusatory looks by my landlady. We are no doubt up to some nefarious hippesque terrorism to support spraying no dump tags by the street drainage again or picking up old furniture on the street to repaint and sell at our yearly nature orgy fundraiser. The old lady gangs in Monty Python spring to mind as she stares at us out her backdoor. The girl and boy scout events I hold in the backyard are equally looked upon as bothersome and freakish. Terrariums? “What you want to save plants in there for?” she asks one morning as I am setting up. 

I sound harsh. As I mentioned it is their house really, like the bumbles we are merely squatters in our own fashion. Ones that pay a pretty penny for a close to good schools and downtown location but never the less squatters. I don’t even try to negotiate the area is much coveted.  I miss Pewaukee, there was a greater Nature love and vibe there. It is a bit harsher here and a faster – do what is easier – pace.

I might have to wait till nightfall to covertly wash away the Raid and it won’t matter they will be watching it now.  I need to go to the back and make sure my spiders are secure – there are several I watch while working, they live right there outside my office window, they have become friends to me, their giant webs spanning the window to the bushes in three foot waves that glisten in the morning light.  Last year the landlady took a broom to the webs there stopping when I screamed in horror when I came into the room and saw what she was doing just outside my window. We never really spoke about it. She just stopped and I just stood there and stared at her. “I like to watch them spin their webs.” Is all I said. She sort of stays away from our side of the bungalow on that side now.

My skin feels blistered from the Raid. I can only imagine what the Bumbles must feel. My heart just aches for them. The kids are at a sprinkler last day of summer party. I am thankful they are not witness to the slaughter and ignorance.

We watched Tarantula on one of the Elvira type movie shows last week – Svengooley  and I really think the world is ready for another giant killer bug movie.

I went outside just now to see if the coast was clear and grand-dad was right there siting on the porch all smiles and smashing Bumbles as they came out of their hidey hole, he’s not even letting them escape. As if they would want to live there now. More idiocy.

Yes, yes…a big big bug movie. I think this might be my fall project. I am if nothing else inspire.  Sci-fi channel here I come. I want Robert Rodriguez to direct.

 I just found out contrary to what I have been telling people Bumble Bee’s do sting. I hope they are not out for revenge.  (The girls sting, not the boys)

“Sting.” That’s the working title… do you like it?

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. alwaysjan
    Sep 04, 2011 @ 22:05:22

    What an incredibly timely post! I’ve only had my 3rd graders for three days now, but they now that I can’t stand people who when they see a bug want to kill it. I told my new students about the two seemingly magical red dragonflies that have laid their eggs in our tiny pond and how fascinating it is to watch them clean the eggs each day. Also about how at our big back-to-school kickoff, a HUGE beetle that looked like a flying jewel hovered around me while people screamed and scattered. I stood still and it landed on my head. It was so huge that its feet tickled as it walked in my hair! My dear dear friend, who teaches down the hall from me and is one amazing artist, tried to grab her camera to get a picture, but she wasn’t fast enough. I can only hope, by example, to encourage my young students to see the beauty that is all around them.


  2. Catherine Sherman
    Sep 09, 2011 @ 21:47:30

    I’m glad you’re looking out for the bees. They need a lot of help. People seem to want to smash any insect they see. I’ve had to talk my husband out of killing the carpenter bees that drill into our deck. They look like bumblebees. Here’s an old post I wrote about the bees in my garden. I didn’t have many bees this year, which is alarming. What happened to them?


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